Yossi Sassi & The Oriental Rock Orchestra – “Prediluvian”


“Prediluvian” marks as the 6th Studio album for Yossi Sassi and The Oriental Rock Orchestra which was released on the 13th of March 2023. The Album concept art by Amir Rozanes, Album design by Liza Murashkovsky, AI cover art by Sol Avi Erez, Original space images by ESA/Webb (N. Bartmann), manipulated, warped and recoloured by Liza Murashkovsky, Executive Producer & Management – Amir Rozanes. The album was engineered and recorded by Liron Schaffer at Black Rock Studios, Santorini, Greece and Mixed and Mastered by Liron Schaffer & Jonathan Jacobi at Jaffa Sound Arts, Tel- Aviv Jaffa.

The album starts off with an ambient “On Shoulders of Nephilim” which starts off beautifully on a Bouzoukitara, and features an eclectic solo that’s sure to soothe the nerves. “Uriel Machine” brings forth an amalgamation of a variety of sounds and instruments with a bang. The song takes on progressions with odd time sequences and crafty hooks that’s sure to mesmerize one and leave the tune ringing in your heads for real long time. “Oopart” gears up with a crunchy guitar sound and sooner than later we hear a blend of Eastern melodies juxtaposed on Western rhythms. The song leverages the same tune and changes octaves to plant a crafty jazzy solo, that’s sure is music to one’s ears.

Next up we have “Atlantis” which has a bluesy flair to its overall sound and transported me back to the 80’s. A familiar rhythm lays out a platform for a mellifluous guitar solo which with every progression adds ounces of notes to its arson and takes the listener to so many levels, that every second the song was fresh and kept surprising me. Ross and Sapir join with lead and added second vocals on “Armaros Fall”. The staccato guitar riff takes the song forward which is shortly met with middle eastern scales as we hear the guitars and vocals duelling out notes after notes. The song ends just as spontaneously as it started. “Anelo” brings out the acoustic guitars and adds a vocalizing hymn that’s layered over a flute that acts as an interlude in the album.

“Watchers of Iyrin” offers flutes and Kanun duelling and soloing over an ecstatic mix of a progressive guitar riffs, a running bassline. One thing I’ve understood and observed with YS & TORO is that their song arrangements are always complex and piece out every excursion beautifully.  “Architect of the Stars” takes a very different take from its predecessors, the song has electronic elements, is a bit funky and at the same time fits in the Rock and Roll genre while keeping the song upbeat and original.

Having listened to Indian classical music while growing up I’ve come to love the flute when paired in rock settings. “Vision of Water” sounds as if it was recorded in the lap of nature. The Flutes that hypnotize during the intro plunges straight to the Bouzoukitara riffing that adds so much texture and substance to the sound of the song. And before we know it the Piano slips in and makes magic happen. I cannot imagine what must go onto the creators mind while these symphonies are penned out. I would want a sitting with the main man and his team.  “Kumlar” takes a similar approach as that of its predecessor and weaves magic with an acoustic guitar and flutes. And as I read at the band’s Bandcamp, I see the two songs were a collaboration between Yossi and Danielle Sassi.

“Sirius” is an upbeat track bursting out with melodies that’s sure to get one grooving. The guitar sweep-pickings showcases the technical prowess and a deep understanding of music which comes out in beautifully woven melodies. The album ends with “The First Sunrise” which is such a happy song, that I couldn’t help myself but smile throughout the breadth of the song. The song progressions and the ending guitar credits gives a bit jazzy flavour to the song.

Production – The album is mixed, mastered and produced brilliantly. I could have not asked for a better sound.

Conclusion – This is a beautiful album and needs to be listened to by all. The magic that’s been woven here is going to go a long way, it’s a timeless classic which will find its place in the history of mankind. This album is a reminder that music indeed is a global language crossing all barriers, times and geographies, that music needs no words to communicate emotions, all one needs is an open outlook.

Rating: 9.5/10

Written by: Ankit Sood

Band Members:

Yossi Sassi – Vocals, Guitars, Bouzoukitara, Bouzouki, Charango, Saz, Ukulele
Or Lubianiker – Electric Bass
Shay Ifrah – Drums
Ben Azar – 7 & 8 stringed Guitars
Roei Fridman – Percussion
Danielle Sassi – Flute, Tenor Flute
Sarel Ha’cohen – Kanun
Emil Guseinov – Viola 
Sapir J. Fox – additional vocals on “Armaros Fall”

Guest musicians:

Ross Jennings – Lead Vocals on “Armaros Fall”
Uriel Herman – Piano

Track Listing:

  1. On Shoulders Of Nephilim
  2. Uriel Machine
  3. Oopart
  4. Atlantis
  5. Armaros fall feat. Ross Jennings
  6. Anelo
  7. Watchers of Iyrin
  8. Architect of the Stars
  9. Vision Of Water
  10. Kumlar
  11. Sirius
  12. The First Sunrise

Release Date: March 13th. 2023

Record Label: Independent

2012: “Melting Clocks”
2014: “Desert Butterflies” (review)
2016: “Roots and Roads”
2018: “Illusion of Choice” (review)
2021: “Hear and Dare” (review)
2023: “Prediluvian”

Weblinks: Facebook / Website / Twitter / Headstart  Bandcamp

Video for ‘Vision of Water’

Video for ‘Armaros fall’ feat. Ross Jennings

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